RBS share price: CMA to assess impact of Williams & Glyn sale
The UK competition watchdog will assess the impact of the sale of Royal Bank of Scotland Group’s (LON:RBS) Williams & Glyn unit, the Treasury has said. The 80-percent government-owned lender is required to divest the business by the end of 2017 as a condition of its taxpayer-funded £45-billion bailout.
RBS’ share price has inched lower in today’s trading, having lost 0.40 percent to 345.70p as of 08:55 BST. The decline is largely in line with the broader market, with the benchmark FTSE 100 index having slipped 0.27 percent to 7,014.69 points.
The UK government has asked the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to assess the likely impact of the latest proposals for the divestment of Williams & Glyn on competition in the UK banking sector. Industry sources told Reuters that the Treasury could ask the blue-chip lender to add more branches or make other changes to make Williams & Glyn a stronger ‘challenger’ bank.
RBS has been ordered to divest Williams & Glyn, which consists of 307 branches in the UK, as a condition of having received state aid during the financial crisis.
“We are working hard and devoting significant resources to establishing Williams & Glyn as a viable, standalone bank that will bring increased competition to the retail market,” an RBS spokeswoman told Reuters, adding that an initial public offering of the unit was planned for the fourth quarter of next year.
The CMA is expected to report its findings in July this year, while the Bank of England’s Prudential Regulation Authority will separately assess whether Williams & Glyn has a viable and sustainable business model.
As of 09:34 BST, Thursday, 28 May, Royal Bank of Scotland Group share price is 347.35p.